Economist Okonjo-Iweala is 66 years old and studied at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Nigerian Nguni Okonjo-Iweala will become the next Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO) by being the only candidate to head that multilateral organization, following the resignation of South Korean Yu Myung-hee, in the last hours of Friday.
The decision of the WTO will be known in the next few days after South Korea’s resignation Support that Nigerian women have received from the United States government, after the inauguration of President Joe Biden.
In this way, Okonjo-Iweala will be the first woman to lead the World Trade Organization and join a long list of women who occupy high positions in international organizations, among them Kristalina Georgieva, at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Ursula von der Leiden. , In the Council of the European Union and Christine Lagarde at the European Central Bank, among others.
The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR for its English acronym) issued a statement stating that it “takes note of the decision made today by the Minister of Commerce of the Republic of Korea, Yoo Myung-hee, withdrawing his candidacy for the position of Director General of the World Trade Organization.”
As published on its website, the Office of the United States Trade Representative said, “The Biden-Harris Administration is pleased to express its strong support for the nomination of Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala for the next Director-General of the World Trade Organization. Dr. Okonjo-Iwela brings a wealth of knowledge in the field of international economics and diplomacy from her 25 years at the World Bank. And two terms as Nigerian Finance Minister. She is highly respected for her effective leadership and has proven experience managing a large international organization with diverse membership. “
At the same time, he indicates that The Biden Harris administration also congratulates Minister Yu Myung-hee on her strong campaign for the position. She is a pioneer as the Prime Minister of Commerce of the Republic of Korea and the first Korean candidate to advance so far in the Director General selection process. The United States respects his decision to withdraw his candidacy from the Director General’s race to help facilitate a consensual decision in the World Trade Organization. “
Moreover, the Office of the United States Trade Representative emphasizes that “it is particularly important to stress this Two highly qualified women advanced to the final round Considering the position of Director General of the World Trade Organization, which is the first time that a woman has reached this stage in the history of the institution.
“The United States is ready to participate in the next phase of the WTO process to reach a consensual decision on the Director-General of the World Trade Organization. The Biden-Harris administration looks forward to working with a new WTO Director-General to find ways to do so.” And the necessary procedures for the World Trade Organization. “
The presidential elections in the United States and outright opposition to the government of Donald Trump hampered the elections in the World Trade Organization Not only were Nigerian women elected, but then Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer openly criticized the WTO itself, calling it a “disaster”.
During Trump’s tenure, the United States has on various occasions threatened to leave the organization, in addition to paralyzing the Dispute Settlement Body Appeals Tribunal.
The election of Nigerian women puts an end to a lengthy selection process in which 8 female candidates participated, After the resignation of Brazilian Roberto Azevedo on May 14, one year before the date his term at the helm of the World Trade Organization should end.
It has now become clear that although the General Council of the World Trade Organization, based in Geneva, Switzerland, had planned to meet at the beginning of March to appoint the new Director General of the World Trade Organization, the meeting could be advanced within the next few days.